The Adelaide Autumn Carnival heats up this weekend with the marquee event, the Group 1 Robert Sangster Stakes at Morphettville on Saturday.


Estriella is tipped to hand trainer Ciaron Maher a third straight win in the 2024 Robert Sangster Stakes on Saturday in SA. Photo: Ultimate Racing Photos.

This $1 million showdown for fillies and mares promises to be a thrilling contest.

Leading the charge in Robert Sangster Stakes betting at Ladbrokes at $3 is Ciaron Maher‘s Estriella.

This three-year-old daughter of I Am Invincible is in top form, having won her last three starts in Melbourne: the Group 3 Kevin Hayes Stakes, the $1 million Inglis Sprint, and the Listed Sunlight Classic.

She’s known for her strong closing kick and ability to handle the 1200m distance.

Although drawn a bit wide in gate 11, jockey Mark Zahra will look to guide her to victory.

Estriella faces stiff competition from several other talented female gallopers.

Her stablemate I Am Me ($6) is always a threat, boasting a winning record over 1200m and a string of strong performances last year.

Fresh off a third-place finish in the Group 1 William Reid Stakes, she’ll be ridden by Blake Shinn and has a good draw in barrier two.

Jason Warren’s Benedetta ($7) is another top contender in this autumn’s Robert Sangster Stakes field.

This four-year-old mare won her last start in the Group 3 RN Irwin Stakes and is looking to become the first horse since Driefontein (2014) to complete the RN Irwin Stakes – Robert Sangster Stakes double.

Drawn well in gate one with Daniel Stackhouse retaining the ride, she shouldn’t be underestimated.

James CummingsZapateo ($8) is another interesting runner.

Ridden by the in-form Jamie Kah, she captured a surprise victory over Sunshine In Paris in the Group 1 The Galaxy and has placed in the Robert Sangster Stakes before with a third last year.

With a good gate three draw, she has the potential to cause an upset and improve in 2024.

The race remains open, with several other runners offering value.

Dual Challenge Stakes winner Passive Aggressive ($11), Phillip Stokes‘ local hope Stretan Angel ($11), and Annabel Neasham‘s Learning To Fly ($14) are all capable of running well.

2024 Robert Sangster Stakes Field

No Last 10 Horse Trainer Jockey Barrier Weight Penalty Hcp Rating
1 3x3506x321 ZAPATEO James Cummings Ms Jamie Kah 3 56.5kg 112
2 17x16122x3 I AM ME Ciaron Maher Blake Shinn 2 56.5kg 110
3 1x4x108x16 PASSIVE AGGRESSIVE Grahame Begg Jordan Childs 6 56.5kg 110
4 3x1134x441 BENEDETTA Jason Warren Daniel Stackhouse 1 56.5kg 108
5 x52x5010x3 ROOTS Chris Waller James McDonald 9 56.5kg 108
6 x21615x007 SKEW WIFF (NZ) Mark Walker Michael Dee 5 56.5kg 104
7 9x29825x12 CLIMBING STAR (NZ) Phillip Stokes Lachlan Neindorf 14 56.5kg 97
8 7x1117x012 LEMPICKA Ken & Kasey Keys Blaike McDougall 4 56.5kg 96
9 1×14243031 WONDERFUL TONIGHT Sam Mynott Craig Williams 12 56.5kg 93
10 353218×014 SNAPPED Anthony & Sam Freedman Todd Pannell 7 56.5kg 92
11 143x645x21 WALTZ ON BY Peter G Moody & Katherine Coleman Billy Egan 8 56.5kg 91
12 1226×111 ESTRIELLA Ciaron Maher Mark Zahra 11 54.5kg 100
13 111Lx24 LEARNING TO FLY Annabel Neasham Chad Schofield 13 54.5kg 95
14 21x217x42 STRETAN ANGEL Phillip Stokes Damian Lane 10 54.5kg 92

Table Credit: Racing Australia.

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About The Author

Lucy Henderson

Lucy is an experienced horse racing journalist that has been a crucial member of the team for the better part of a decade. She has taken great delight in covering champion mares Black Caviar and Winx throughout their careers and always has a soft spot for a winning filly.